Florence M. <I>Harris</I> Mardo

Florence M. Harris Mardo

Fulham, London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, Greater London, England
Death 19 Oct 1963 (aged 73–74)
Akron, Summit County, Ohio, USA
Burial Akron, Summit County, Ohio, USA
Plot Sec. 6
Memorial ID 115682910 · View Source
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Daughter of Jed Robinson, London, England
Foster daughter of Daniel H. Harris and Emma (Peek) Harris a.k.a. Madame Marantette.

Wife of Peter Guckeyson, a.k.a. Pete Mardo.

Florence Robinson was born in Fulham, London, England in 1889. At the age of nine she lived with her widowed father Jed Robinson, her six sisters and one brother. Her father owned a livery stable and every day she would slip away to ride her favorite pony over the little jumps along the English lanes.

One day Dan Harris, a showman from the Barnum & Bailey's Circus dropped in to visit his old friend Jed and buy a few horses. He saw Florence practicing jumps and arranged to adopt her and train her as a professional equestrian. Three months later in Vienna, Austria she made her circus debut riding in the theater where the Royal Lipizzaner Stallions regularly performed.

At the conclusion of the circus' European tour she came to the United States along with her brother Arthur as the foster children of Daniel H. Harris and his wife Emma Peek, a.k.a. Madame Marantette, one of the world's most famous women riders. Florence and Arthur both continued as performers in the circus, Florence becoming a highly acclaimed horse woman in her own right.

In 1909 she and her future husband Pete Mardo (Peter Guckeyson) met while both starring in the Ringling Brothers Circus. The circus forbade open courtship between members of the troupe but they managed to steal away time together between performances and at mealtimes. At the end of the 1910 season they were married.

They continued performing, featured at the top of the bill working for the biggest shows of the era, the Sparks Circus, Hagenback & Wallace Circus, Ringling Brothers Circus, and the Barnum & Bailey Circus. In 1929 Pete and Florence left show business and substituted cooking for clowning and corrals. When ask why , Pete said," Because we got so darn sick of eating in restaurants all our lives."
They opened a tearoom in Poland; Ohio just outside of Akron called Mardo's Talley-Ho Tavern & Grill where they enjoyed their remaining years.

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  • Maintained by: Dennis L. Carpenter
  • Originally Created by: Zella
  • Added: 18 Aug 2013
  • Find A Grave Memorial 115682910
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Florence M. Harris Mardo (1889–19 Oct 1963), Find A Grave Memorial no. 115682910, citing Glendale Cemetery, Akron, Summit County, Ohio, USA ; Maintained by Dennis L. Carpenter (contributor 47341356) .